In this week’s blog post I want to talk about Matt Haig’s Reasons To Stay Alive which I read recently and has helped me see slightly clearer.
What does it mean to feel truly alive?
This is the true story of how Matt Haig came through crisis, triumphed over a mental illness that almost destroyed him and learned to live again. Moving, funny and joyous, Reasons To Stay Alive is more than a memoir. It is a book about making the most of your time on earth.
I actually bought this book for my mum, knowing that she suffers with anxiety more so than I, but I too wanted to read it myself. It’s been on my TBR for a while now and I finished it within a number of days.
Matt Haig writes from the heart, that much is true. I didn’t really know what to expect when I first started reading this, but it soon became clear that he has the wildest of thoughts too, meaning I’m not alone in this battle. It’s true what he says, when you have your first panic attack, you think you’re the first ever person to have had one, and to have felt that bad. But you’re not, for decades, people have suffered with panic attacks, anxiety and depression.
I can also understand the depression part of the book too as I have been there. It isn’t there so much anymore, but the anxiety still is. It’s always there, lurking, waiting for me when I’m most vulnerable. And when you have anxiety and depression mixed together like a cocktail, it has the power to break you. But what this book is about is how Haig survived the toughest of years, the worst of suicidal thoughts. He’s still here; yes it may be difficult some days, but ultimately, there is so much to experience on this earth. There’s so much to see, do, feel. No one wants to miss out on the good stuff, but sometimes we have to go through the shit in order to get to the good.
Mental health is still stigmatized, but if every person shares their story like Haig, the world will become less stigmatized the more we talk about it. Share your story, don’t be afraid to show the real you. We have all had panic attacks, bad days and been in shit situations. You are not alone in this.
I truly enjoyed listening to the ways Haig copes with his depression and anxiety and how we should live in the moment as much as possible. It was like reading his diary. What a beautiful book it is and I urge everyone out there, with mental health problems or not, to read this. If not for you, then for someone you know who struggles. This book will help you spot the signs of mental illness more easily and how you can be there as a partner/family member for your loved one.
I hope you enjoyed this review and I’ll see you soon! Love, Vee x